Daily News Briefs: July 16, 2012

Jaguar will offer four- and six-cylinder engines beginning this fall, Automotive News reports. It marks the first time since 2008 that the automaker has offered a V-6, and the first time in more than 60 years that Jag offered a four-cylinder. The latter will be a 240-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder from the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque (Jaguar and Land Rover are owned by India's Tata Motors). Jaguar will offer it in the midlevel XF; some of its competitors such as the BMW 528i and Audi A6 2.0T have turbo four-cylinders. Both the XF and the flagship XJ, meanwhile, will add a supercharged V-6 with 340 hp or 380 hp. Both new engines will pair with eight-speed automatics, Automotive News says, but gas mileage won't be available until next month. The four-cylinder XF will need dramatic improvements. With its 5.0-liter V-8, today's XF tops out at an EPA-estimated 19 mpg combined. That's far below the 528i and A6 2.0T, which are respectively rated 27 and 28 mpg combined with two-wheel drive and automatic transmissions.

In other news:

  • Speaking of Jaguar, ZF — the supplier responsible for the automaker's current six-speed automatic transmissions, as well as Chrysler's eight-speed — says that despite eight- and nine-speed transmissions making inroads, six-speed autos will be "the bread-and-butter transmissions for years to come," according to Automotive News.
  • Hyundai will resume talks with Korean labor unions this Wednesday, Reuters reports. Strikes seemed imminent last week after negotiations over working conditions broke down, but both sides agreed to resume talks this week.
  • Production capacity may still constrain Hyundai's U.S. growth, however. The Detroit News reports the automaker is looking to expand U.S. production and invest in crossovers and trucks.
  • Reuters reports Opel interim chief Steve Girsky told employees at GM's unprofitable European subsidiary that success "demands from all of us the readiness to do things differently." Girsky took over when Opel head Karl-Friedrich Stracke stepped down last week.

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